Monday, April 2, 2012

Cupcake Calculations

Lots of Moms say it's just as cheap to buy cupcakes as it is to make them, but I always get self-righteous and disagree.

So when Mabzie wanted to take 18 cupcakes to school tomorrow to celebrate her upcoming birthday with her friends, we got our stuff together to bake them:

1 box  Funfetti cake mix (makes 24 cupcakes); $1/Walmart
2 cans Funfetti frosting with sprinkles (13 servings each); $3/Walmart
1/3 cup vegetable oil; $.21/Walmart
3 eggs; $.48/Walmart
cupcake liners ($1.47 for 75); $.48/Walmart
2 pkg Peeps for decoration; $2/Walmart

So I figured 24 cupcakes would cost $7.19, compared with the decorated cupcakes Walmart was selling today for $6 a dozen.  We were going to save almost $5! (For ease of calculations, I didn't consider tax, but I think the rate is lower for groceries than for prepared foods, anyway, which is another post for later...)

The first dozen cupcakes baked beautifully and we were both quite proud. But for the second batch, we only had enough batter to make 7. So a box of mix made only 19- which is OK, still enough! But, I was worried that my math was not going to prove my point at all...

Iced and decorated with sprinkles and Peep bunnies, they were so cute!

Then, guess what?  One can of frosting (13 servings) was plenty for 19 cupcakes!  We can return one can of frosting for $1.50, so our cost ends up being $5.69, or 30 cents per cupcake.

Final analysis:

Walmart cupcakes:  50 cents each
Our cupcakes:         30 cents each
Making cupcakes together:  PRICELESS

In the end, we saved over $6, and we did have enough cupcakes, but the Home Ec Dropout part of me thinks that even if those other Moms are spending twice the money on inferior cupcakes, at least they know how many they are getting!

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